Updated: Mar 1
It's the first of October and the first weeks of Autumn. I feel rather lucky to be introducing my new book "still life" in a predominantly virtual world for pre-order from PANK Press this month (that is also my birthday month!). Since more of us are in this virtual space more often these days, I have curated videos and blog posts to share with you throughout this month that promise to be haunting and candid as I share my experience writing this book and with sexual assault and a hidden disability.
Moreover, in a time when we all need it most, I will be introducing the concept of "compassionate self-witness" and how bearing witness to our own stories or finding ways to create witnesses can address our immediate needs to survive trauma and grief.
I am excessively grateful to all those who contributed to the process and production of this book including PANK editors Jessica Fischoff & Chris Campanioni; my constant ally in poetry writing Dennis Hinrichsen; my blurbers Luke Johnson, Petra Kuppers, & Kelly Grace Thomas; and my former MFA workshop partners Chantelle Lynn & Alexis David who gave me extra confidence to do something wonderful with these poems! As well as the NEC MFA program. Thanks all!
Hey all! My second chapbook "still life" comes out with PANK this October. Pre-order info will be available soon but, for now, here's a first "teaser" video I made to introduce my work.
I really believe in the importance of exploring difficult emotional terrain and giving more personal and public space to these stories to erase shame and shaming. Too many woman and men privately suffer physiological stresses from carrying sexual trauma. Sharing and validating these stories and experiences allows victims/survivors to release the impact of that shame, offering compassion to the self and receiving it from communities. These poems are my own act of "compassionate self-witness" through art.
Enjoy. Be moved. Offer compassion to yourself and others. And please feel free to share this video!